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46% of US employers struggling to fill jobs, says ManpowerGroup

46% of US employers report difficulty filling jobs, according to the ManpowerGroup 2018 Talent Shortage Survey of more than 2,000 U.S. employers. At a time when there are more jobs than skilled workers in many states, businesses are struggling to fill open positions. Skilled trade workers, sales representatives and drivers remain the hardest roles to fill.

Most of the jobs where demand is growing are mid-skilled roles such as electricians, welders and mechanics that require training, yet not always a four-year college degree. More than half of the companies surveyed are investing in learning platforms and development tools to build their talent pipeline, up 7% from 2016. 19% of employers are also changing their existing work models, including offering flexible work arrangements.

Although unemployment remains low, there are millions of workers on the edge of the US labour market. Companies are bringing in workers from the sidelines to fill talent gaps and 40% are looking at different talent pools for skills including boomerang retirees, long-term unemployed or returning parents and part-timers.

Becky Frankiewicz, president of ManpowerGroup North America, said, "We continue to see increasing demand for skilled workers across all sectors of the U.S. economy from transport and trade to manufacturing and sales.

"Employers cannot find the people they need with the right blend of technical skills and human strengths and the problem won't fix itself. It's time for a new approach to attract, recruit and retain talent. Employers need to buy skills where necessary, borrow from external sources and help people with adjacent skills bridge from one role to another. Above all, we need to be builders of talent, rather than consumers of work to create a workforce with the skills companies and individuals need to thrive today and tomorrow."

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